Packet: River Gauges, Roads, Alcohol, and Fire @ LCC 2019-10-21

Lowndes County is adding funding for the Skipper Bridge Road Withlacoochee River gauge to its traditional since 2009 funding of the Folsom Bridge GA 122 Little River gauge. That’s $8,300 and $14,200, respectively, with another $5,900 for the Skipper Bridge Gauge from the Suwannee River Water Management District. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) puts in $900 towards each gauge, or $1800 total. Valdosta still funds the North Valdosta Road US 41 Withlacoochee River Valdosta gauge, and USGS completely funds the US 84 Quitman Withlacoochee River gauge.

[OPTIONS: 1. Approve the FY 2020 Funding Agreement]
OPTIONS: 1. Approve the FY 2020 Funding Agreement
PDF

Details are in the Board Packet now on the LAKE website, received Friday, October 18, 2019, in response to an open records request.

The rest of the Lowndes County Commission agenda for Monday and Tuesday is dominated by roads: a resolution on criteria for taking private roads into the county public road system, and resolutions taking in roads within several subdivisions: Continue reading

Valdosta Chamber Candidate Forum 2019-10-08

Meet the Candidates 2019, organized by the Valdosta Lowndes Chamber of Commerce: no questions from the audience, but Gretchen Quarterman videoed for LAKE the few minutes each candidate for Valdosta Mayor, City Council, or Valdosta Board of Education held forth. Plus seven minutes about SPLOST, the Special Local Option Sales Tax, the only thing voters in the unincorporated parts of Lowndes County get to vote on this election season.

Mike Gudley talks about the SPLOST referendum

Below are links to each LAKE video Gretchen took, followed by a LAKE video playlist.

Continue reading

Valdosta City Council Town Hall 2019-09-30

Most people missed a chance to ask whatever they wanted of the Valdosta City Council, without time limits or fear of ejection from the room. This town hall, hosted by Council members Andy Gibbs and Eric Howard, apparently was not announced on Valdosta’s own website nor in the Valdosta Daily Times. But Gretchen Quarterman was there for LAKE and videoed it, and provided the notes below. The few people who did attend were interested enough to take an hour and a half of their time to participate in the community and local government.


      People are sometimes afraid to speak

George Boston Rhynes noted that people might fear even coming to this kind of meeting, because of fear of retaliation, by being blackballed for jobs, or in other ways.

Lowndes County Commissioner Scottie Orenstein was there, and occasionally answered, as did Valdosta City Council Tim Carroll. City Council Sonny Vickers was also there.

Sidewalks were a major topic. Gretchen wondered why every street doesn’t have one. Instead, the city thinks it will improve traffic on Bemiss Road by making it wider.

Naturally, Taxes in County and City and property values were a major topic. Valdosta City Council Sandra Tooley said she thought sidewalks make property values go up, so why should the county get any of that tax money when the city paid to put the sidewalks in? Others misunderstood that, and more discussion ensued. People remain confused about how SPLOST works between city and county.

Back on transportation, a final speaker spelled out how Valdosta is not bicycle-friendly, so children can’t ride bicycles to school, students to VSU, employees to work, or people to see friends, because it is not safe. Same for Lowndes County: not safe for this healthy, family-friendly activity and transportation method. Andy Gibbs said this is one of the topics being gathered into the Parks and Rec. Master Plan, currently in progress.

Below are links to each LAKE video, followed by a LAKE video playlist. Continue reading

Videos: Rights of Way variances: Village of Hope and SSMT Holdings @ ZBOA 2019-10-01

ZBOA approved both Lowndes County cases, both for variances to access rights of way, but one barely by a split vote, with the other unanimous.

Below is a LAKE video playlist of the meeting, followed by Continue reading

Videos: Do not pave Hightower Road, rezonings on Val Del, Great North Road, US 41 N @ LCC 2019-10-08

Eleven minutes plus three minutes from people asking do not pave Hightower and Cooper Roads near Moody AFB. They said they weren’t even consulted before the county decided to pave. Chairman Bill Slaughter offered to talk with those citizens after the meeting, but not during, when the public could have heard him. Before that, County Manager Joe Pritchard summarized internal discussions about the county road inventory.

More than four minutes for the second NATCO rezoning on Val Del Road was the longest item at this Regular Session.

The Wisenbaker rezoning on Great North Road had a Commissioner recuse himself and took 2.5 minutes. The applicant request to table for Hogan on US 42 N was passed in less than a minute.

Below are links to each LAKE video of each agenda item, followed by Continue reading

Videos: Rezonings on Val Del, Great North Road, US 41 N @ LCC 2019-10-07

Eight minutes with no questions from Commissioners is all the Lowndes County Commission took to consider the peoples’ business at yesterday morning’s Work Session. Two minutes each for the rezonings for Natco on Val Del Road and Wisenbaker on Great North Road. One minute for Hogan on US 42 N. The Chairman noted there was a request by the applicant to table that one. A commissioner joked a motion to approve. The Chairman said they might take that action the next day. They vote this evening at 5:30 PM.

The biggest news was after adjournment, when the Valdosta Daily Times editor introduced a new reporter.

Below are links to each LAKE video of each agenda item, followed by a LAKE video playlist. See also Continue reading

Packet: Rezonings on Val Del, Great North Road, US 41 N @ LCC 2019-10-07

The second Natco subdivision on Val Del Road sailed through the Planning Commission, and probably will through the Lowndes County Commission. Where is that wetlands study GLPC took for granted somebody conducted?

[Exhibit 1: subdivison plan]
Exhibit 1: subdivison plan

The rezoning of the Wisenbaker property on Great North Road also sailed through GLPC 7:0.

[WRPDO Site Map]
WRPDO Site Map

The third rezoning, for heavy manufacturing on the Hogan Property at US 41 N and Wellman Place, was requested to be tabled by the applicant, and GLPC Continue reading

Videos: More Natco on Val Del Road + 2 more Lowndes County cases @ GLPC 2019-09-30

Longest at 22 minutes was the second Natco subdivision on Val Del Road. At least they’re moving back towards Valdosta, remaining within existing services (which were run out Val Del Road for Nelson Hill).

The Wisenbaker rezoning on Great North Road sailed through even faster, with nobody speaking against. The Hogan heavy manufacturing rezoning at US 41 N and Wellman Place was recommended to be tabled, 7:0, at the request of the applicant, who discovered a variance is needed first.

They also recommended 7:0 approval by the various elected bodies a Joint Ordinance, which is apparently about the operations of GLPC itself. What’s in it is mysterious. Why they can’t put it on the county or city website is even more mysterious.

Below are links to each LAKE video of each agenda item, with Continue reading

Rights of Way variances: Village of Hope and SSMT Holdings @ ZBOA 2019-10-01

Two Lowndes County cases this month at ZBOA, both wanting variances to access rights of way. Village of Hope appears to be a religious rehab center, offshoot of House of Hope, wanting to use the same access road as Valdosta Wake Compound.

[Site plan on Aerial Map]
Site plan on Aerial Map

SSMT Holdings appears to be an ordinary subdivision expansion, with fewer feet than code requires for road access due to a retention pond.

Also, ZBOA votes on officers this month.

Here is the agenda. See also the board packet, which is on the LAKE website, courtesy of ZBOA Board Member Gretchen Quarterman.

Valdosta – Lowndes County Zoning Board of Appeals

Valdosta Planning and Zoning Office
300 North Lee Street, Valdosta, Georgia
(229) 259-3563

Lowndes County Zoning Office
327 North Ashley Street, Valdosta, Georgia
(229) 671-2430

AGENDA
October 1, 2019
2:30 p.m.

  1. Call to Order

    LOWNDES COUNTY CASES:

  2. VAR-2019-11 — Village of Hope (Old Clyattville Road)
    Request for a
    variance to ULDC Chapter 4.04.03(D) as it pertains to Design Standards for lots and Chapter 6.01.02(D)(1) as it pertains to Streets and Rights-of-Way requirements
  3. VAR-2019-12 — SSMT Holdings (4173 Springruff Drive)
    Request for a
    variance to ULDC Chapter 4.04.03(D) as it pertains to Design Standards for lots and Chapter 6.01.02(D)(1) as it pertains to Streets and Rights-of-Way requirements

    OTHER BUSINESS:

  4. Approval of Minutes: September 10, 2019
  5. Nomination of Chairman and Vice-Chairman
  6. Adjournment

-jsq

Investigative reporting costs money, for open records requests, copying, web hosting, gasoline, and cameras, and with sufficient funds we can pay students to do further research. You can donate to LAKE today!

More Natco on Val Del Road + 2 more Lowndes County cases @ GLPC 2019-09-30

Look who’s back after last month’s rezoning on Val Del Road, which was heard by the Planning Commission and approved by the Lowndes County Commission: Natco, with another rezoning for twice as many acres, also on Val Del Road, just south of that previous rezoning.

[56 acres for sale just to the south]
56 acres for sale just to the south

Also a Joint Ordinance, which one can guess is the one Lowndes County Chairman talked to the Planning Commissioner about after adjournment last month, which one can guess is the SPLOST VIII agreement.

Why do we have to guess what our elected and appointed boards are up to? Would it be so hard to include a few words on that agenda item to say which Joint Ordinance? For that matter, would it be so hard to publish the GLPC board packet along with the agenda, like many counties much smaller than Lowndes have already been doing for years?

Here is the agenda:

Greater Lowndes Planning Commission
~ Lowndes County ~ City of Valdosta ~ City of Dasher ~ City of Hahira ~ City of Lake Park ~ City of Remerton ~

REGULAR MONTHLY MEETING AGENDA
Monday, September 30, 2019 5:30 P.M.
Public Hearing, Lowndes County South Health District Administrative Office
325 West Savannah Avenue, Valdosta, Georgia

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